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Steve Smith admits Australia need to rectify regular batting collapses

Humbled inside four days in the series opener against Bangladesh in Dhaka, Steve Smith-led Australia romped to a seven-wicket victory in Chittagong, but not before another mini-collapse in their chase of a paltry 86-run target.

cricket Updated: Sep 07, 2017 20:35 IST
Steve Smith,Bangladesh vs Australia,Australian Cricket Team
Steve Smith-led Australia beat Bangladesh by seven wickets in Chittagong to level the two-Test series 1-1. (AP)

Australia must address their tendency to collapse before this year’s Ashes series against England, skipper Steve Smith said after his team levelled their two-test series against Bangladesh on Thursday. (BAN vs AUS SCORES)

Humbled inside four days in the series opener in Dhaka, Australia romped to a seven-wicket victory in Chittagong, but not before another mini-collapse in their chase of a paltry 86-run victory target.

Openers David Warner and Matt Renshaw, as well as Smith, perished before Australia reached 50, though Glenn Maxwell scored a breezy unbeaten 25 and sealed the victory with a six.

(Read | Nathan Lyon spikes Bangladesh as Australia level Test series with easy win)

“Those batting collapses, they’ve become quite a regular occurrence for us,” Smith said after Australia slipped to fifth place in test rankings despite the win.

“It’s something we need to rectify. We get ourselves into good positions and then can’t go on with it. That’s something we have to fix.”

The series exposed Australia’s frailties against spin bowling. In Dhaka they lost 19 wickets to the Bangladesh spinners, with the other dismissal being a run-out.

(Read | David Warner revels in most patient Australia century in Chittagong Test)

On a brighter note for the tourists, Warner redeemed himself with back-to-back centuries, Nathan Lyon finished with 22 wickets -- the highest by an Australian in a two-test series -- and paceman Pat Cummins breathed fire even on docile tracks.

“I thought we played some good cricket at times in this test match. In the first innings ... to restrict them to what we did,” Smith said.

“I’m proud of the way the boys got over the line in the end to get the 1-1 draw.”

(Read | Michael Holding says Test cricket being strangled by popular Twenty20 “weed”)

Counterpart Mushfiqur Rahim said that Bangladesh, who registered their first test win against Australia in Dhaka, would take heart from the drawn series ahead of their tour of South Africa.

“We will learn from this innings and hopefully in the next couple of years, if a similar situation comes, we’ll handle it better,” Mushfiqur said.

“Whether you win or lose, there are always areas to improve. It will be different conditions in South Africa. We have to come up with good plans and execute well.”

Lyon’s 13-wicket match haul earned him the man-of-the-match award and he shared man-of-the-series honours with Warner.

“We know we haven’t had the most success in the subcontinent, so it was important for us, as a young group, to come out and stand up in these conditions,” the off-spinner said.

“Bangladesh are a classy side, so to come up against them was a challenge for us.”

First Published: Sep 07, 2017 18:34 IST